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Domestic Partnerships Guiding You Through Difficult Times

Ventura Domestic Partnership Attorneys

California Domestic Partnership Laws

Provisions governing California domestic partnerships can be found in the California Family Code. A domestic partnership is established when two parties meet certain criteria as specified by these laws.

How Can I Form a Registered Domestic Partnership in California?

To form a registered domestic partnership, each individual needs to file a Declaration of Domestic Partnership and fulfill the following criteria:

  • Both individuals are 18 years old (some exceptions are allowed)
  • The individuals cannot be blood related
  • Both individuals cannot be married or in another domestic partnership
  • Both individuals must consent to the domestic partnership
  • Both are members of the same sex or one or both is/are eligible for Social Security benefits and over *62 years old (this has been updated – see below)

*Governor Newsom signed a bill on July 30, 2019 redefining who is eligible for a registered domestic partnership, allowing opposite-sex couples under the age of 62 the option to form such a partnership. This new law was put into effect on January 1, 2020.

How Can I Terminate a Registered Domestic Partnership in California?

A domestic partnership can also be terminated under certain conditions. All these conditions are set forth in the California Family Code and must be met or the domestic partnership will be terminated through proceedings in California Superior Court.

California Domestic Partnerships & Same-Sex Marriages

The California Supreme Court issued a major decision on May 15, 2008 regarding same-sex marriages, which did not invalidate or change any of the California Family Code statutes related to registered domestic partners.

  • Registered domestic partnerships will continue to be active on California’s domestic partnership registry
  • The California Secretary of State will continue to process domestic partnership-related filings as permitted by the domestic partnership law.

If you have questions about how the California Supreme Court’s decision may apply to your circumstances, contact us online.

How Domestic Partnership Separations Work

A domestic partnership separation is treated just like a typical divorce. However, regardless of the situation, you should find an experienced attorney who has helped people with their child support, child custody, visitation, and/or property division case.

Do Registered Domestic Partners Have the Same Legal Rights as Spouses in California?

California law states that Registered Domestic Partners have many of the same rights as spouses. These rights include:

  • The ability to add a partner to state-administered health insurance benefits
  • The right to inheritance, should one partner die
  • The ability to raise a child born during the partnership
  • The ability to adopt a child born before the partnership
  • The right to own community property
  • The ability to take their domestic partner’s last name or combine their last names

How Our Ventura Domestic Partnership Lawyers Can Serve You

At SANTO MEHAS, negotiated settlement is always our preferred method of choice. In the event this is not possible, we are also able to help litigate your domestic partnership in court.

We take pride in the way we communicate and serve our clients. With us, there will always be someone available at our office to answer your questions and address your concerns.

Fill out a contact us form online or give us a call at (805) 222-7818 for help with your domestic partnership case. 

An Emphasis on Strong Family Values

Our firm places a strong emphasis on the importance of family values. The balance between maintaining these family values and generating a better future for you and your family is one we strive to achieve with each case. Our values consist of:
  • Holistic Approach

    We aim to resolve conflict so you and your family can move on peacefully. We approach all aspects of a case, including the emotional, financial, and mental components, and advocate with you throughout.

  • Collaboration

    Collaborative divorce can be a great option for spouses looking to share joint custody of their child/children and the court looks favorably on this decision. When possible, we strive to come to a resolution that will benefit both spouses.

  • Children Come First

    We respect the fact that our clients trust us with important life-decisions. We strive to be as understanding and empathetic as we can with you and treat you like we would treat a close family member.

  • Compassionate Legal Services

    We respect the fact that our clients trust us with important life-decisions. We strive to be as understanding and empathetic as we can with you and treat you like we would treat a close family member.

Our Satisfied Clients

Real Stories from Real People
  • “Michael & Donna EXCEEDED my expectations”
    “Michael & Donna ! Where do I begin! ?? You two are VERY SPECIAL HUMAN BEINGS ? I Can't thank you enough for the UNBELIEVABLE support & services I have received from your office. I was in a VERY tough place in the situation I was unfortunately, unex”
    - Alyssa S.
  • “I highly recommend Donna Santo and the Mehas law firm”
    “I highly recommend Donna Santo and the Mehas law firm.”
    - Revis J.
  • “A final settlement in a reasonable amount of time at a price”

    When I brought in this law firm to represent me in my divorce, my wife and her lawyer knew I had gained the ability to fight back if necessary. From that point on, negotiations could proceed. Peace through strength. Fortunately, no protracted or unnecessary fighting was necessary. Due to longstanding relationships, understandings, and trust between my team and my wife's team, deals were worked out on several fronts, avoiding crossing anyone's red lines and resulting in a final settlement in a reasonable amount of time at a price far below what either of us expected to pay.

    - David Goldstein
  • “I would trust them with any of my needs”
    “I would trust them with any of my needs.”
    - Ron H.
  • “Donna fought for me and she will fight for you.”
    I have a pretty complicated case that needed a lot of things done quickly and Donna was able to not only get them done but she knocked it out of the park and I am very happy with the outcome. She is also great at communicating things throughout the process in a way that I could understand.
    - Wayne
  • “Michael and Donna are amazing!”
    Michael and Donna are amazing! Very supportive, quick with responses and they made my proceedings go so smoothly, providing all information and options I needed to decide what was best for me, and are there if I'm in need of any other information. Highly recommended!
    - Kristin N.
  • “I was able to be a part of my child’s life which is priceless.”

    I had a divorce and child custody case and Santo Mehas represented me. Michael Mehas traveled from his Ventura office to Fresno to appear on my behalf and was diligent in fighting for my rights as a parent. We had a positive outcome with agreeable visitation rights. I was able to be a part of my child’s life which is priceless.

    - Matthew A.
  • “Donna, through her vast experience, was able to give me my financial life back and has made it possible for me to plan for my future.”

    Great family law attorney. I consulted with Donna Santo regarding my complex family law case and was immediately impressed with her professionalism, knowledge and experience. Throughout my case I was given status updates and was able to pick up the phone and contact Donna. I never felt lost during the process. Donna was able to answer all of my questions and respond to all of my concerns. My ex wife went through several attorneys and even was self-represented for a while. Through all of this, Donna stayed the course, went to trial and we prevailed on all issues.

    Because of Donna’s ability to understand real property laws, ours was in another country, complex income tax issues, self-employment and corporation income components, breach of fiduciary duty in my case, we were able to present our well-prepared case to the court.

    Donna, through her vast experience, was able to give me my financial life back and has made it possible for me to plan for my future.

    Needless to say I am pleased with the outcome in my case and highly recommend Donna, and her helpful staff, to anyone needing a professional Family Law attorney in Ventura County.

    - Dan